Foot posture influences the way the rest of our body functions. There are three basic positions in which the foot may function- neutral, (the favoured position) pronation, (eversion; dorsiflexion and abduction) and supination. (inversion; plantarflexion and adduction)
Over pronated or over supinated foot posture can impose excessive stress on other joints. For example, it has been shown that there is a link between excessive pronation of the foot and medial compartment knee osteoarthritis. (Levinger et al 2013) Orthotics can be used in two different ways- accommodative and functional. Accommodative orthotics are used to provide comfort and relieve symptoms. These are particularly useful for those with diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis. Functional orthotics are prescribed to ‘improve foot and lower limb function, and reduce local, proximal skeletal and soft tissue misalignment.’ (Mooney; 2010)
Orthotics can be used for a variety of people and conditions to provide comfort, prevent pathology or treat pathology. Orthotics can be used as a treatment for people experiencing aches and pains, diabetics, those with musculoskeletal conditions, those who feel unstable on their feet and athletes. Ideally, orthotics would be used to correct alignment and posture to prevent injury. However, more often patients attend clinic once they have an injury. There have been investigations into how effective orthotic therapy is in the treatment of sports injury. One report showed prescribed orthotics relieved pain in 96% of the patients. 70% were able to return to their activity as the same level previous to injury. (Donatelli et al; 88)
Thanks to a kind donation from Rocktape UK we will be providing free Taping prior to the Bath Half Marathon. We will be starting early at our Bath Sports Centre Clinic (Aqua Terra) with some taping and will be there at the end to provide post race massage. Bring a few pennies for a charitable donation!
Physioimpulse Chartered Physiotherapists